The 2017 NY2LA Sports Lone Star Invitational continued from Fieldhouse USA in Mansfield, Texas on Saturday. Day two featured the beginning of NY2LA Association 16U play. The 17U Open Division also started to take shape with tournament play kicking off. In 16U, Donovan Moore kept doing what he does, delivering another big performance for the Illinois Irish as his stock continues to rise. 


Grayson Early – 2018 – SG – The Blueprint5

Early is a shot hunter and can score the ball in different ways. He goes extremely hard off the ball and absolutely flies off screens, looking for catch and shoot opportunities. Early has a quick trigger and has an effortless release. The 6-foot-5 junior is also a strong slasher. He uses his 195-pound frame to his advantage and punishes defenders when they challenge him at the rim, going right through the chest. A good-looking athlete, Early is also a standout defender with his ability to lock up on the perimeter and dig in on the glass and keep opponents off the boards. 

Matt Garriga – 2018 – SG – Dallas Showtyme Elite
Garriga went off in the first half during a win over RM5 Elite East. The junior shooting guard poured in 23 points in the opening period. Garriga killed the opposition from beyond the arc and in transition. He connected on four triples and made some impressive above the rim finishes on the break. Finishing with 25 points, Garriga displayed nearly a full package offensively. A sharpshooter who can come off screens and drain triples as well as score off the bounce and create for others, Garriga was perhaps the most pleasant surprise on Saturday. 

Addison Wallace – 2018 – SG – Lone Star Elite
Lone Star Elite cruised to a win Saturday morning, but in limited duty, Wallace showed some things. The 6-foot-4 shooting guard has a really nice mid-range game and doesn’t feel the need to settle for triples or attack the rim against shot blockers. Wallace displayed a nice one-dribble jumper when defenders would fly out at him. His ability to draw defenders and drop off passes to his bigs was also impressive. Wallace was really effective and just getting into the teeth of the defense, waiting for the opposition to react, and then making the right play with the basketball. 

Harlond Beverly – 2019 – G – REACH Legends

Beverly had a number of highlight plays around the basket on Saturday. The 6-foot-4 sophomore was able to finish some impressive double-clutch shots in traffic. His ball was finding the bottom of the net from very difficult angles. Beverly shined in transition. He’s long, athletic, and Beverly’s ability to push the tempo and stay in control despite playing at a high pace was very impressive. Despite a loss to the Illinois Irish, Beverly posted a nice stat line. 

Deandre Carter Jr. – 2019 – PG – Grand Rapids Storm
Carter had Grand Rapids Storm on his back at times. Although his team came up short against the Illinois Irish, Carter played some strong stretches of basketball. An excellent mid-range shooter, Carter creates his own shot with ease. He’s very quick on the ball and created a lot of separation against some very talented defenders. Carter also looked to constantly push in transition and was able to keep his team in the game by generating fast break opportunities. 

D.J. Carton – 2019 – PG – Quad City Elite
When you talk about all-around impact, Carton has emerged as the top player in the 16U question. Nobody affects the game as much as this rising sophomore. Even when Carton is not scoring, he locks his man down, gets work done on the glass, orchestrates the offense, and even blocks/alters shots. Carton has taken over offensively all weekend. He’s an aggressive attacker that can finish above the rim. Carton has an excellent pull-up jumper off the bounce and excels from mid-range. His 3-point shooting can be erratic, but he’ll consistently produce from beyond the arc. College coaches are falling in love with Carton after his performances and the offers are coming.

Donovan Moore – 2019 – G – Illinois Irish Elite
Moore picked up where he left off at the Swish N’ Dish and put together another big performance against the Reach Legends. A 6-foot-3 guard that can score and assist at a high rate, Moore plays stretches of dominant basketball. Moore was scoring from all three levels and never lets his foot off the gas pedal. One of the top stock boosters this spring, Moore is a relatively unknown prospect that’s been pushing for high major status and drawing looks as well. Moore handles the point guard duties, but can also be the primary scorer and play off the ball. A smooth guard with intriguing length and strength, Moore has a lot of wiggle with the ball in his hands and can make defenders look foolish at times. 

Cole Nau – 2019 – PG – Ray Allen Select
A true point guard with a high basketball IQ, Nau helped lead Ray Allen Select to a win over Grand Rapids Storm on Saturday. A 6-foot-2 floor general that runs the show and controls the game, Nau makes winning plays, even if they don’t show up in the box score. His ability to create offense for others is one reason his teammates love playing with him. Nau weaves between the defense, always drawing defenders, and sets his teammates up for success. When it’s his time to score, Nau has a quick first step on the ball and can blow by people offensively. He has excellent touch around the rim and floats shots over the top of the defense. If you leave him open, Nau can be deadly from beyond the arc. Maybe the best thing you can say about Nau, when he’s on the floor, the offense is always flowing and the ball movement is on point. 

Matthew Ragsdale – 2019 – SG – The Force
Ragsdale exploded for 37 points in a win over the Wisconsin Playmakers. With his team trailing by double digits in the second half, Ragsdale went to work. He simply went into ‘give me the ball and get out of the way’ mode. Ragsdale was breaking down defenders, putting one on the floor after a crossover. In a zone offensively, Ragsdale drained triples at a high rate. He’s only 6-foot-1, but Ragsdale is smooth and has excellent touch from all levels. In what was the performance of the night in 16U, Ragsdale had the gym buzzing Saturday night. 

Blaise Threatt – 2019 – SG – Blue Chip Nation
Blue Chip Nation ran a lot of offense for Threat Saturday night and he delivered. A strong ball handler, Threatt has an array of tools with the basketball. He did a nice job of playing well in space and sizing his man up. When defenders respected his dribble drive ability, Threatt wisely hit them over the top with 3-pointers. Threatt also got out ahead of the pack in transition and converted some easy buckets to close the first half on a high note, capping off a big opening period for him. 

Andre White – 2019 – PG – All-In Gardner
White is a super quick and electric guard with excellent handles. He can shake and bake his way to the rim as White has the ball on a string. Even simple little head fakes or in and out dribbles were throwing the defense off course in a blowout win over Blue Chip Nation on Saturday. White had a big first half scoring, but by then, the game had been put away. One of the faster player in the 16U Division, White brings a different element of speed to the table. The way he can toy with defenders, even when they’re up in his shorts, was fun to watch. 

Deonte Billups – 2019 – SG – Quad City Elite

Billups dropped 17 points in a blowout win over Martin Bros. on Saturday. The 6-foot-3 sophomore is a three-level scorer that can score in a variety of ways. He hit three triples and also finished off some exciting baskets around the rim in limited duty. Billups is also a stopper defensively. He made a number of plays on that end of the floor, using his long wingspan to get in the passing lanes. Billups also rebounds quite well for his size and crashed the offensive glass hard, looking for second chance opportunities. 

Collin Dietz – 2019 – G/F – Illinois Irish 
Putting together a big second half, Dietz closed the game out in a win over Grand Rapids Storm. He was terrific down the stretch, scoring a bulk of his game-high 17 points in the waning minutes. A 6-foot-6 slasher, Dietz is a crafty scorer that maneuvers well in traffic. His length and athleticism is also put to use on the defensive end, where Dietz cleans the boards and blocks/alters numerous shots throughout the game. A much improved offensive player, Dietz is expanding his game on that end of the floor.  

Tyler Ellingson – 2019 – SG – Ray Allen Select
Ellingson got hot in a win over Reach Legends on Saturday. He buried a number of consecutive triples in the first half to help Ray Allen Select run away with the game. A strong spot-up shooter, Ellingson finds the soft spots in the defense and makes them pay with weak coverage. He plays really well off his creators and seems to have great chemistry with his teammates, who are always looking to get him opportunities from beyond the arc.

Carrington McCaskill – 2019 – PF – REACH Legends
McCaskill was a monster in Saturday’s loss to Quad City Elite. A huge bright spot for his team, McCaskill was extremely active. The 6-foot-6 forward plays much bigger than his size. A strong shot blocking presence, McCaskill gets off the floor quickly and times shots perfectly. On offense, McCaskill hit the offensive glass and even threw down an impressive one-hand tip slam. McCaskill also expanded his range and knocked down a couple of jumpers from 10-12 feet. In a league short on bigs, McCaskill emerged as one of the top interior presences after his performance on Saturday. 

Tristian Pratt – 2019 – F – The Force
Impressive physically, Pratt is a 6-foot-4 point forward with good size, strength, and athleticism. He’s got a ways to go offensively, but Pratt does a lot of other things well. He can handle the ball in transition and passes well for his size. Pratt was often seen grabbing rebounds and going coast-to-coast. Pratt protects the rim well and got his hands on a number of shot attempts and altered even more. A high motor player, Pratt gets up and down the floor and isn’t afraid of the dirty work on the interior. 

Damen Trice – 2019 – PG – Example Sports
Trice was solid on both ends of the floor to open Saturday morning. The 5-foot-11 guard got to the rim consistently and displayed good strength around the basket against contact. Trice played a little on and off the ball. He was efficient from the floor, didn’t settle, and worked for the best available shot. Despite being selective, Trice had 10 of his team’s first 30 points in a low scoring affair. An unselfish guard, Trice did a nice job of making the extra pass, giving up a good look for a great look by his teammates. Trice finished with a double figure scoring effort in short work in a win over Blue Chip Nation. 

Donovan Moore is receiving interest from Iowa, Bradley, Illinois State, and others. 

D.J. Carton has picked up interest from Wisconsin, Iowa, Nebraska, IUPUI, and more.